First Reading: Colossians 1:9-14
Brothers and sisters: From the day we heard about you, we do not cease praying for you and asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of God’s will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, so as to be fully pleasing, in every good work bearing fruit and growing in the knowledge of God, strengthened with every power, in accord with his glorious might, for all endurance and patience, with joy giving thanks to the Father, who has made you fit to share in the inheritance of the holy ones in light. He delivered us from the power of darkness and transferred us to the Kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 98:2-3AB, 3CD-4, 5-6
The Lord has made known his salvation. The LORD has made his salvation known: in the sight of the nations he has revealed his justice. He has remembered his kindness and his faithfulness toward the house of Israel. All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation by our God. Sing joyfully to the LORD, all you lands; break into song; sing praise. Sing praise to the LORD with the harp, with the harp and melodious song. With trumpets and the sound of the horn sing joyfully before the King, the LORD.
Gospel: Luke 5:1-11
While the crowd was pressing in on Jesus and listening to the word of God, he was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret. He saw two boats there alongside the lake; the fishermen had disembarked and were washing their nets. Getting into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, he asked him to put out a short distance from the shore. Then he sat down and taught the crowds from the boat. After he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water and lower your nets for a catch.” Simon said in reply, “Master, we have worked hard all night and have caught nothing, but at your command I will lower the nets.” When they had done this, they caught a great number of fish and their nets were tearing. They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come to help them. They came and filled both boats so that the boats were in danger of sinking. When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at the knees of Jesus and said, “Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man.” For astonishment at the catch of fish they had made seized him and all those with him, and likewise James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners of Simon. Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.” When they brought their boats to the shore, they left everything and followed him.
How is your prayer life? When was the last time you checked in with yourself and God and really gave any thought to your prayer life? Meditating on the First Reading today I couldn’t help but feel like I come up short. Then again with saints as our standard it is hard to measure up!
I am on a prayer warrior list for one of our ministries so I get regular request for prayers from our parish. Facebook is filled with prayer requests as well and our BIS Regional groups have been great places to connect and pray for the intentions of one another. But how frequently do we continue to pray for those folks once we have clicked off-line? I get caught up in deadlines and dishes, ToDo lists and the time-suck of social media. Saint Paul gives us such a lovely glimpse into the prayer life that we can aspire towards while in communion with one another here on earth. He says “we have not ceased to pray for you . . . .”
I know I have a long way to go before my prayers can be constant, but that doesn’t mean that my little prayers here and there aren’t valuable too. I know that because I have felt the little prayers of my busy brothers and sisters when I was too distressed to pray unceasingly myself.
When my daughter was born she had to spend a little while in the NICU. Like many parents with babies born struggling, I was in a bit of a fog. The NICU family center had a computer for us to use and I remember clearly sitting at that computer and hammering out prayer requests and updates. Those prayers sustained me. Well, really God sustained me, but the prayers to Him made a difference! The knowledge that my community was praying for us provided such peace. Have there been times in your life when you have felt sustained through the prayers of others?
I am praying for you dear sister.
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In your times of need, don’t be afraid to call on your sisters here, and the Saints that have gone before us. And for those of us who are called upon to pray for others, let us strive to be like Saint Paul, and in his words pray unceasingly, that we may all “be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, to lead a life worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to Him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.”
MaryRuth Hackett is a full-time wife and mother doing her best to teach her four children to love God and country. You can find out more about her here.